Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Carnation Souvenir Headband

Today's vintage souvenir is a simple (but great!) paper headband that was apparently given to kids who visited the Carnation Ice Cream Parlor. These are not common, so I am assuming that they weren't handed out for more than perhaps a year or two - I have one photo of a kid wearing one circa 1955, and two more from 1956.

So there it is - a simple strip of paper with a design that (I suppose) resembled the fine beadwork used by some Native American tribes. Only they generally didn't include a cutout of a tub of Carnation Ice Cream.

I picked this up a few years ago for a lot less money than I expected, and since then I've seen two or three others.

No "Indian" headband is complete without a feather, and this one still has its original plume.

As I mentioned earlier, I have a few photos showing kids wearing these headbands - such as this one from April, 1956. 

Some of you may remember this freckled girl in a photo from May, 1956.

And finally, here's a detail from a November 1955 image!


Nanook said...


What an interesting collectible. Nothing screams Native American more than Carnation Ice Cream-! (But then again, this was the mid-1950's).

I do believe our freckle-faced friend is also sporting an outfit with a Peter Pan collar. Now, just what is that pin she's wearing-?? Also gotta love that truly 1950's pink shirt, with contrasting grey yoke worn by [presumably] her dad.

Thanks, Major.

K. Martinez said...

What an unusual piece that I've never seen before until now. And the feather is intact too! How did these two related items manage to stay together all these years? Somebody was obviously taking care of their ephemera. Nice added touch seeing the kids wear the headbands in the vintage Disneyland photos. Thanks, Major.

Matterhorn1959 said...

These headbands tend to bring a fair amount of money when sold on Ebay and at auctions. I have not wanted to spend the money for one...I figure I may find one in a scrapbook one of these days.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, yes, I am sure this item was a reflection of America's fascination with TV and movie westerns. Somehow I thought a Peter Pan collar was rounded and white, but I suppose they can have frippery on them as well.

K. Martinez, the three (or so) that I have seen have all had their feathers present. It almost makes me think that somebody found a small stash of them in a box, though I don't really know.

Matterhorn1959, they do tend to go for a lot BUT... not as much as I would expect, given their scarcity. I've seen items much more common go for more than that. I hope you find one for a low low price!

Anonymous said...

Something like this would provoke outrage today. Remember how quickly Disney pulled the Maui halloween costumes from the Moana movie tie-in.

Still fun to see kids having fun.


Jimmy said...

Hahaha! It was certainly a simpler and more gullible age, when someone could stick a paper advertisement for the Carnation Company on their child's head under the pretense that it was an Indian headband! They should do it today. Starbucks could have children wear paper cups on their heads and pretend that they're some kind of native Hawaiian garb related to Kona coffee. People are surely just as foolish now as they were then!